Nassim on CNBC Squawk Box: Global coronavirus response a case study of government incompetence and denial

In a “Squawk Box” interview, Taleb specifically pointed to the importance of coronavirus testing. While countries have improved their capacity since the early days of the Covid-19 outbreak, Taleb said there has been a failure to develop quick, efficient testing at a scale that can cut off chains of transmission early. It also has the least economic cost, he said.

Link to the interview:…

Fake Regression by Psychologists

Fake Regression by Psychologists (Fooled by Randomness), Based on the paper on Trust by Nicolas Baumard

How to detect fake regressions. Never pay attention to numbers before looking at the graph.

First I show how to spot fakes in a sinister paper by Nicolas Baumard et. al. linking people’s physical traits to (un)trusworthiness.

Second, more technically, I derive the distribution of the slope between two random variables and show how one can game it.

[YouTube] COVID Risk Conversation: Yaneer Bar-Yam and Nassim Nicholas Taleb

A continuation of Nassim and Yaneer’s regular conversation. In this video, they discuss:

1) The errors in ignoring scaling for pandemics. Why a doctor’s micro-expertise doesn’t transfer to collective risks?

2) How evidence-based medicine is closer to anecdote based medicine owing to silent risks?

3) The risks of morbidity must be accounted for.

4) How the dangers of vaccines do not scale.

[YouTube] Ellipticality (Technical)

Modern financial theory assumes that distributions are elliptical. We show what happens if the assumption doesn’t hold. And the assumption doesn’t hold.

Diversification does NOT reduce risks in the financial market; it causes near-certain long term blowups under any leverage.